Almost three-quarters of young people 'have witnessed sexual harassment on a night out'

Some 79 per cent of woman say they expect some form of harassment on a night out

Henry Vaughan
Friday 29 September 2017 00:16 BST
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Most women say they expect sexual harassment as part of a night out
Most women say they expect sexual harassment as part of a night out

Almost three-quarters of young people have witnessed sexual harassment on a night out, according to a new survey.

The YouGov poll of 2,013 adults aged between 18 and 24 who drink in bars, clubs or pubs also found nearly two-thirds (63 per cent) of women and more than a quarter (26 per cent) of men said they had been on the receiving end themselves.

A total of 72 per cent claimed to have seen some form of sexual harassment, including "someone being on the receiving end of inappropriate sexual comments or abuse", "someone being on the receiving end of inappropriate sexual touching" or "someone receiving other inappropriate or unwanted physical attention or touching".

Some 79 per cent of women said they expected inappropriate comments, touching and behaviour on a night out toward them or their friends.

The findings, from a survey commissioned by Drinkaware, were published as the charity campaigns to end drunken sexual harassment.

Drinkaware's campaign lead, Janet MacKechnie, said: "For far too many people, drunken sexual harassment is now sadly part and parcel of a night out.

"Being drunk is no excuse to grab, grope or make inappropriate comments to strangers on a night out after a few drinks."

The charity is calling for bystanders to step in, if safe, to support anyone being targeted.

"If people see someone being sexually harassed, asking them if they are okay can make a big difference whether they're a friend or a stranger," Ms MacKechnie explained.

"It's time to put an end to unwanted drunken sexual harassment. Asking someone if they are okay and giving them support sends a clear signal that this behaviour is no longer going to be tolerated."

Lucy Harrison, from north London, told how she stepped in after a man grabbed her friend's bottom in a club.

She said: "She told him to go away, but he kept coming back. It's like he saw it as a challenge. When his mates got involved I stepped in too.

"It seemed safer to talk to his mates as I wasn't sure how he would react.

"His mates defended his behaviour and said he was just very drunk.

"But I told them that's not an excuse - if you wouldn't do it sober, you shouldn't do it drunk.

"Even after they'd all left, I felt like I needed to keep looking out for this guy in case he tried to grope or harass my friend again.

"It completely ruined our night."

PA

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